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How Genes Influence Behavior

Second Edition

Jonathan Flint, Ralph J. Greenspan, and Kenneth S. Kendler

January 2020

ISBN: 9780198716877

392 pages

In Stock

Price: £39.99

The most engaging behavioural genetics text available, providing up-to-date, research-led, critical insights into the field, its methods, and its findings.



How Genes Influence Behavior 2e takes a personal and lively approach to the study of behavioral genetics, providing an up-to-date and accessible introduction to a variety of approaches and their application to a wide range of disorders, and modeling a critical approach to both methods and results.

  • Takes a personal and lively approach to the study of behavioral genetics, creating an accessible and engaging introduction for students
  • Strikes the right balance between covering essential biology and maintaining an appropriate focus on the main issues of relevance to psychology students
  • Emphasis on looking critically at methods and results helps students develop and apply their own critical thinking skills
  • Tackles common misconceptions and misunderstandings in the field
  • Also available as an e-book with functionality, navigation features, and links that offer extra learning support

New to this edition

  • Additional biology content helps students to understand the biological foundations of the field.
  • A new final chapter guides students through a range of quantitative approaches using worked examples that relate directly to cases and examples used earlier in the text, and addresses current issues arising from debates around reproducibility.
  • Updates coverage of genomic technologies and their applications in genetics and epigenetics.
  • Covers a wider range of disorders, including autism spectrum disorder, eating disorders, and intellectual disability.
  • A new chapter covers advances in behavioral genetics that have used non-standard model organisms, both invertebrates and vertebrates.
  • Provides an up-to-date review of the discoveries stemming from genome-wide association studies of human psychiatric disease and behavior.

About the Author(s)

Jonathan Flint, Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, University of California, Los Angeles, California, USA, Ralph J. Greenspan, Kavli Institute for Brain and Mind, University of California, San Diego, California, USA, and Kenneth S. Kendler, Virginia Institute for Psychiatric and Behavioral Genetics, Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia, USA

Jonathan Flint is a Professor at the University of California Los Angeles where he works on the genetic basis of depression using both human and animal models.

Ralph Greenspan is a Professor at the University of California San Diego where he is Associate Director of Kavli Institute for Mind and Brain. He work includes analysis of the genetic control of nervous system development in the fruit fly and mouse, and genetic and neurobiological studies of innate and learned behaviors in the fruit fly.

Kenneth Kendler is a Professor at the Virginia Institute for Psychiatric and Behavioral Genetics at the Virginia Commonwealth University. He has conducted family and twin studies on a range of psychiatric and substance use disorders as well as molecular genetic studies on schizophrenia, alcoholism, and depression.

Table of Contents

    2:The genetic epidemiology of schizophrenia
    3:Molecular biology of nucleic acids
    4:Epigenetics, gene regulation, and 'omic technologies
    5:Linkage and association
    6:Genome wide association studies (GWAS)
    7:Molecular genetics of schizophrenia
    8:Autism spectrum disorder
    9:Intellectual disability and developmental disorders
    10:Anxiety, depression, and eating disorders
    12:The genetics of intelligence, personality, and personality disorders
    13:Genes for what?
    14:Genes and the environment
    15:Mapping mouse behavior
    16:Reverse genetics
    17:Mutagenesis and the molecular dissection of circadian rhythms
    18:Many vs. One: Genetic Variation in Flies and Worms
    19:Comparative genomics
    20:How genes influence behavior
    21:How do we know a finding is true? Quantitative Approaches


"The breadth of knowledge that is required to prepare a new generation of behavior geneticists is certainly present in the 2nd edition of How Genes Infuence Behavior" - Tinca J. C. Polderman, Behavior Genetics, 07 June 2021

"Easy to read, comprehensive, up to date. The entertaining writing style will enthuse many new students, as will the low price." - Tinca J. C. Polderman, Behavior Genetics, 07 June 2021

"The authors are to be applauded for sharing with us their fascinating journey through the world of genetic research (and Irish hostels, and tattoos), and as such delivering a great contribution to the behavior genetics literature." - Tinca J. C. Polderman, Behavior Genetics, 07 June 2021

"The book covers a wide variety of topics in appropriate depth and with an informative, but relatively informal, style. A major strength is its focus on the recently highlighted topic of reproducibility (and how to maximise this), which is an area in which students need to be suitably educated. " - Dr William Davies, Cardiff University

"Very easy to read, and the narrative makes it engaging." - Dr Michelle Luciano, University of Edinburgh

"An excellent and easy-to-read, engaging textbook." - Professor Robert Gerlai, University of Toronto Mississaugu

Additional Resources

Digital formats and resources

How Genes Influence Behavior is supported by online resources and is available for students and institutions to purchase in a variety of formats.

The e-book offers a mobile experience and convenient access along with functionality tools, navigation features and links that offer extra learning support: www.oxfordtextbooks.co.uk/ebooks

The online resources that accompany How Genes Influence Behavior include:

For students
* Multiple choice questions for students to check their threshold knowledge
* Data sets for students to manipulate, so that they can apply what they have learned

For lecturers
* Figures and tables from the book, ready to download